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Harboring DataInformation Security, Law, and the Corporation$
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Andrea M. Matwyshyn

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780804760089

Published to Stanford Scholarship Online: June 2013

DOI: 10.11126/stanford/9780804760089.001.0001

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Information Security and Contracts

Information Security and Contracts

Contracting Insecurity: Software License Terms That Undermine Information Security

(p.159) 9 Information Security and Contracts
Harboring Data

Jennifer A. Chandler

Stanford University Press

This chapter examines software contracting through the lens of cybersecurity in order to analyze terms and practices that arguably reduce the general level of cybersecurity. The inspiration for this approach is the growing recognition that the cybersecurity problem is not merely a technical one, but is also dependent upon social and economic factors, including the applicable law. The first part of the chapter considers a series of clauses that undermine cybersecurity by suppressing public knowledge about software security vulnerabilities. The next part considers a range of practices (rather than license terms) that undermine cybersecurity. The final section turns to the question of what should be done, if anything, about license terms that undermine cybersecurity. In particular, it suggests that there are reasons to believe that such terms are the product of various market failures rather than a reflection of the optimal software license terms.

Keywords:   software contracting, cypersecurity, information security, data security, software security

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